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Yes, I was first introduced to the MBTI in college and it was a real eye opener for me.  I tested as an INTJ and was delighted to see that Rand was considered to be an INTJ as well.  I have studied the MBTI some and use it to type new people I meet, it helps get an estimate of who they are.

I took the test again with the link you provided, and I tested as an INTJ again.  There is at least one member on this board that has taught the MBTI, and I hope they find this thread.

I do not feel that the MBTI conflicts with Objectivism.  It is Jungian based, who was largely reason based, and if one considers the MBTI a tool to get a logical estimate, I think it is a great thing.

 

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58 minutes ago, KorbenDallas said:

Yes, I was first introduced to the MBTI in college and it was a real eye opener for me.  I tested as an INTJ and was delighted to see that Rand was considered to be an INTJ as well.  I have studied the MBTI some and use it to type new people I meet, it helps get an estimate of who they are.

I took the test again with the link you provided, and I tested as an INTJ again.  There is at least one member on this board that has taught the MBTI, and I hope they find this thread.

I do not feel that the MBTI conflicts with Objectivism.  It is Jungian based, who was largely reason based, and if one considers the MBTI a tool to get a logical estimate, I think it is a great thing.

 

Lucky me.  I am a solid INTJ  plus being an Aspie (Aspberger's and INTJ have a very similar symptomology).  The nick name for INTJ is master mind, btw.

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Are these 16 types all compliments in some way?

There are almost 7 billion people--and only 16 types?

Reads like classifications of opinions. Sounds like second cousin to The Dim Hypothesis. Faux science--it's everywhere: thinking in circles, starting with conclusions and ending there once everything is set up. It's the same problem with space travel: if you don't come back to Earth you're dead. (Want to go to Mars?) You have to come back to the conclusion--one of 16--to camouflage what you're doing. You do that with faux ignorance--which of the 16 am I? I don't know. Take the test. Now I know. From 16 back to one. Once a slave, now you're free--from your head back to your head, now knowing what someone else knows that just ain't so--you (and now you too know others too, just like phew, and they don't even have to take the test!).

The mystery remains but now forgotten.

I suppose Ellen will come on board and defend Jung, whom I suppose is easier to defend than the 96.7% worthless Freud. (Worthless percentage, but I too can play this game: tell me, what percentage has each of the 16 types of the grand total 100%? Where's the damn data?)

--Brant

next: history is a (Marxist) science (see current discussion by Michael Marotta and Steve Wolfer on Rebirth of Reason, "Communist View of Ayn Rand")

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Yup, it was easier when there were just 12 Astrological Signs in vogue. At best, there's bound to be combinations and spillover across these 16, rendering little definitively useful - at worst, one makes decisions about other individuals based on their 'type', and maybe starts behaving according to one's own 'type' (self-fulfilling)..

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19 minutes ago, EyeofCassandra said:

I stand pretty firmly behind my work in Myers Briggs. It has helped me tremendously in my life and I have seen it help others too. When something proves true you keep it. When something proves irrational you throw it out. 

This is the correct approach as opposed to just words. It's ad hoc and personal. If something doesn't work then try something else. I usually use sentence completion.

--Brant

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2 hours ago, Brant Gaede said:

This is the correct approach as opposed to just words. It's ad hoc and personal. If something doesn't work then try something else. I usually use sentence completion.

--Brant

I try! Since I started reading Ayn Rand's works, I have been trying to think more with my logic instead of just my emotions. 

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7 hours ago, Brant Gaede said:

suppose Ellen will come on board and defend Jung, whom I suppose is easier to defend than the 96.7% worthless Freud. (Worthless percentage, but I too can play this game: tell me, what percentage has each of the 16 types of the grand total 100%? Where's the damn data?)

Jung didn't develop and is neither to be faulted or credited or partly faulted/partly credited in whatever mixture (depending on one's evaluation) for the Myers Briggs.  Myers and Briggs developed the test, on their own steam, deriving from and adapting (somewhat changing) Jung's typology.

I know a number of Jung-influenced therapists who find the Myers Briggs valuable. (A few of them are fairly fanatic in extolling its accuracy.) I know others who are lukewarm or cool-to-cold about it.

Myself, I think that the test loses the "spirit" of Jung's approach and becomes rather trait-mechanical, more like the MMPI (Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory) than like Jung. I've never employed the Myers Briggs or even taken it.  On the other hand, I think that it could be helpful to particular people if it's used without making a straight-jacket out of it.

Ellen

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Myers-Briggs typology is really a catalog of mental styles.  Ones MB type does NOT determine one's beliefs or premises.  And there are people who exhibit a mixture of MB  types  so it is not a water tight classification scheme. 

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12 hours ago, Brant Gaede said:

Are these 16 types all compliments in some way?

Punny -- if inadvertent. One of the basic caveats about the whole MB system and elaborations is that it can't warn you about personality disorders. It does not type 'personality' in the way that a more rigorous Big Five personality assay can.  In MB -- every 'type' is a compliment.  There are no defects of reason or temperament or human values that the MB can flag. It only can tell you nice, complimentary things about Self 1. That, plus the Barnum effect makes for a suggestive mental environment, and tends to disable critical judgment -- in the sense of actually telling you important things about you and the people you obey, interact with, and command.

Similarly, the much-maligned F-scale tells you something, and in a smaller, hedgy-woozy way, as does the Political Compass. 

Every time I have taken short-form online mini-MB tests, I end up feeling sort of, how you say, placid. I knew nothing more coming out than I knew going in. 

-- a whole other schmozzle is the use and abuse of various MB-related tools in hiring and human resources organizing.  There are said to be -- in the highly-priced and jealously-guarded instruments a whole lot of epistemological whoopee situations.  An NTJB gets partnered with a BGTY, because the manuals tell you the two are naturally-matched.    

How the heck do you test something like that?

Those skeptic grouses aside, any 'indicator' can help an individual plumb their own psyche, especially if used as a tool and not a lantern of truth.

Last fall I wrote this, which might be suggestive to Cassandra and other doubters ...

On 10/27/2015 at 4:00 PM, william.scherk said:

Beyond the merely personal, I think almost all human beings have these (M-B indicator) aspects of personality, apparent at some times and in some situations, tamped down or resting at others ...

5d8a6de591ba36f4384621e84c20d5dd.jpg

 

3 hours ago, Ellen Stuttle said:

Jung didn't develop and is neither to be faulted or credited or partly faulted/partly credited in whatever mixture (depending on one's evaluation) for the Myers Briggs.  Myers and Briggs developed the test, on their own steam, deriving from and adapting (somewhat changing) Jung's typology.

I know a number of Jung-influenced therapists who find the Myers Briggs valuable. (A few of them are fairly fanatic in extolling its accuracy.) I know others who are lukewarm or cool-to-cold about it.

Can you give an indication of valuable to whom and maybe in what aspects?  Accurate in .... forecasting "performance," personality conflicts, easier paths to therapeutic goals?

Quote

Myself, I think that the test loses the "spirit" of Jung's approach and becomes rather trait-mechanical, more like the MMPI (Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory) than like Jung. I've never employed the Myers Briggs or even taken it.  On the other hand, I think that it could be helpful to particular people if it's used without making a straight-jacket out of it.

Ditto.   Any scale or indicator or personality 'truth-o-meter' needs to be attended with epistemological knives at the ready. The history of psychology is full of the below-the-waterline fads and popular delusions.  That is perhaps the human condition, to believe in weird things, and to be taken by 'snapshots' of the self that help us achieve positive and objective self-regard.

Maybe Cassandra can tell us some time what the MB has done for her, what self-discovery and selfish goals it has help her gain.  I suppose any tool can help develop 'self-aim' if applied with diligence, and reason.

 

Edited by william.scherk
Mp3 add; spelking, grammar
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On March 10, 2016 at 8:17 PM, william.scherk said:
On March 9, 2016 at 5:23 PM, Ellen Stuttle said:

I know a number of Jung-influenced therapists who find the Myers Briggs valuable. (A few of them are fairly fanatic in extolling its accuracy.) I know others who are lukewarm or cool-to-cold about it.

Can you give an indication of valuable to whom and maybe in what aspects?  Accurate in .... forecasting "performance," personality conflicts, easier paths to therapeutic goals?

First, a clarification of my usage "Jung-influenced therapists":  I think that all the ones I know who use the Myers-Briggs are either psychiatric social workers or psychologists who haven't done a course of study at one of the Jung Institutes and aren't certified as Jungian analysts.  As best I recall, all the certified Jungian analysts I know are lukewarm ranging to negative about the Myers-Briggs.  They don't like the potential it affords for pigeonholing and for thinking that you're understanding a person when really you aren't, you're just applying a category.  Plus they have quarrels with the alteration of the typology - the addition of the "Perceiving"/"Judging" pair.

I don't know to what extent any of the enthusiasts I've talked with utilizes the test for prediction attempts. They've spoken of what they see as the value in affording insight.  The "fairly fanatic" ones I mentioned are convinced that the theory behind the test is fully sound and is validly captured in the test questions. Confronted with an example of a person whose characteristics don't appear to match the purported pattern, they'll say, for instance, that some extraneous factor is "masking" the real characteristics, that sort of adjusting observation to suit preconception.

Ellen

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Here is some background of the MBTI and how it was formed.  Notice the sample size and selection of its members:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Isabel_Briggs_Myers#Influences

Quote

...The Dean of the George Washington School of Medicine allowed Briggs Myers to apply the MBTI to their freshmen. It included about 5,500 students and she studied it for years by looking at patterns among dropouts and successful students.


Another link, with more sample sizes and selection, and information on how the MBTI was formed:

https://www.capt.org/mbti-assessment/isabel-myers.htm

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On 3/8/2016 at 7:49 AM, Brant Gaede said:

There are almost 7 billion people--and only 16 types?

Yes and no. Depends on how many "factors" you look at. Usually, personality theorists try to "carve up" the population in terms of what they find to be the factors that most strongly account for the differences among people. Not just the MBTI people, but also the McCrea-Costa people (5-Factor Theory), have found that 4-5 factors account for well over 50% of the differences. Then they combine them, and the magic of factorial math does the rest. The 5-Factor people say in effect that there are 32 types of people. Even the MBTI people have, in the past 30 years, expanded their model to include a 5th factor called "Comfort-Discomfort," so they are now a 32-type model too, but they continue to promote or present their model in terms of a 4-letter, 16-type framework. Easier to understand, I guess.

Sure, this is pigeon-holing, but there is a real-world (though self-reported) basis to it, in contrast to astrology which gives 12 calendar-determined "types." (Har.)

A good comparison is to blood types. We think of there being "only" 4 types for 7 billion people. They are determined by the presence or absence of the A factor and the presence or absence of the B factor. Both = Type AB. Only A = Type A. Only B = Type B. Neither = Type O. 2 x 2 = 4 types.

Yet, there's also, for instance, the Rh factor. Each of the four types can be Rh positive or Rh negative. So 4 x 2 = 8 types: AB+, AB-, A+, A-, B+, B-, O+, O-. And doctors have expanded their thinking, squeezing 8 blood types into their heads as per medical necessity.

And there's no reason the typing has to stop there, if there are other blood factors that account for a significant difference medically speaking. For all I know, there are additional such factors, but the talk is all about the big four plus the Rh factor.

One more comparison: in politics, people often carve up the spectrum in terms of pro or con personal freedom and pro or con economic freedom. Consistently held, these positions generate 4 political types: libertarian (pro/pro), liberal (pro/con), conservative (con/pro), authoritarian (con/con). But some have suggested adding pro or con foreign intervention.

Again we see an 8-type model lurking, though many seem to have trouble admitting even 4 political types into discussion - whether from lack of mental capacity or from an agenda of excluding a more attractive competitor (usually libertarianism). And the 8-type framework could certainly be expanded to 16, 32, etc., if other strongly distinguishing categories could be found that account for even more of the differences between people's political views.

Just to leave no implicit stones unthrown: I do think there is merit in the MBTI and in the 5-Factor model, as in these other models, as long as people remain empirical and don't confuse the map with the territory. There is a lot of subtlety in human personality.

In fact, the MBTI also have tinkered with an "expanded analysis" that looks at what they call "sub-factors" within each of the factors. There are 5 components, for instance, of intuiting vs. sensing - one being abstract vs. concrete, another being imaginative vs. realistic, another being intellectual vs. pragmatic, another being theoretical vs. experiential, and another being original vs. traditional.

As the questionnaires reveal, people typically have widely varying scores on each of these subscales, resulting in a very nuanced overall score for intuiting vs. sensing (N vs. S). You can even have a strong sensing subscale that vividly colors four other strong sensing subscales. For instance, you may come out strongly thinking (T) on four subscales, but come out tender rather than tough on the fifth. This makes a much different personality than one who is strong T across the board.

So, back to the 7 billion in 16 pigeonholes problem: since there are 5 subfactors for each of the original 4 factors in the MBTI and another 7 subfactors for the new fifth factor (Comfort-Discomfort), multiplying the options yields (2 x 2 x 2 x 2 x 2) x (2 x 2 x 2 x 2 x 2) x (2 x 2 x 2 x 2 x 2) x (2 x 2 x 2 x 2 x 2) x (2 x 2 x 2 x 2 x 2 x 2 x 2) = 32 x 32 x 32 x 32 x 128 = 33,554,432 possible personality types. Divide that into 7 billion, and you see that you, precious snowflake, are "just like" 208 other people on earth.

Your mileage may vary. The subfactors aren't equally subdivided or distributed, so you win some and lose some on that 208 clones-of-me bit. Kinda like guessing how many inhabited planets there are in the universe. But wouldn't it be cool to find even two or three people "just like you"? 

REB

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I don't want to find any people "just like me." I'm quite odious.

I see some value in this MBTI for a fiction writer. I just don't see any value at all for the even correctly categorized person. I tend to an individualist perspective.

--Brant

we are living in the golden age of the automobile--look at the variety--but the last basic change was the automatic transmission: so, manual or automatic--two categories only (the previous was 4-wheeled brakes) and you wouldn't pay much attention to these categories in buying a car or light truck unless you were set on a manual transmission which is hard to find (automatic is now the general manufacturing default)

If you want to find a mate get in a position to get smitten then think about it before you get married (in the meantime have a lot of fun if you can for what happens in bed has a lot to do with the evaluation--sorry, but I must insist: to get trucking you have to get _______--what you fill in the blank in on you; I was never here)

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The MBTI and related models of personality and character types are definitely useful for fiction writing. Much analysis of this kind has been done of novels and movies. Fascinating stuff. Writers use it, and consumers can use it in better grasping what writers are up to. Rand had her own character categories, too, but they were more characterological and philosophical: second-hander, Witch-Doctor, Lone Wolf Social Metaphysician. In fact, there's a cool essay just waiting to be written for The Journal of Ayn Rand Studies on that very topic. :excl:

The MBTI is also useful in interpersonal relationships and self-improvement. By understanding nuances of personality and temperament, we can know ourselves and others better and be more accepting of differences and appreciative of what Isabel Myers referred to as "gifts differing" in her book of the same name. David Keirsey, who adapted MBTI ideas to his own temperament  model, titled his best known book "Please Understand Me," which was a plea for people to abandon their "Pygmalion Projects," trying to change other people. (Henry Higgins: "Why can't a woman be more like a man?") :lol:

Understanding not only differences, but in particular different strengths and weaknesses, also helps us to be less judgmental about others, when the trait involved is not clearly one of moral principle, but instead one of sociality, motivation, emotionality, or intellectuality. (Rand speaking of "concrete-bound mentalities" is a good example of such non-acceptance. My mother's berating me for being "unsocial" as a teenager - I was an introverted bookworm who didn't like parties - is another. :P)

REB

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  • 4 weeks later...
On 3/15/2016 at 10:50 AM, Roger Bissell said:

Yes and no. Depends on how many "factors" you look at. Usually, personality theorists try to "carve up" the population in terms of what they find to be the factors that most strongly account for the differences among people. Not just the MBTI people, but also the McCrea-Costa people (5-Factor Theory), have found that 4-5 factors account for well over 50% of the differences. Then they combine them, and the magic of factorial math does the rest. The 5-Factor people say in effect that there are 32 types of people. Even the MBTI people have, in the past 30 years, expanded their model to include a 5th factor called "Comfort-Discomfort," so they are now a 32-type model too, but they continue to promote or present their model in terms of a 4-letter, 16-type framework. Easier to understand, I guess.

Sure, this is pigeon-holing, but there is a real-world (though self-reported) basis to it, in contrast to astrology which gives 12 calendar-determined "types." (Har.)

A good comparison is to blood types. We think of there being "only" 4 types for 7 billion people. They are determined by the presence or absence of the A factor and the presence or absence of the B factor. Both = Type AB. Only A = Type A. Only B = Type B. Neither = Type O. 2 x 2 = 4 types.

Yet, there's also, for instance, the Rh factor. Each of the four types can be Rh positive or Rh negative. So 4 x 2 = 8 types: AB+, AB-, A+, A-, B+, B-, O+, O-. And doctors have expanded their thinking, squeezing 8 blood types into their heads as per medical necessity.

And there's no reason the typing has to stop there, if there are other blood factors that account for a significant difference medically speaking. For all I know, there are additional such factors, but the talk is all about the big four plus the Rh factor.

One more comparison: in politics, people often carve up the spectrum in terms of pro or con personal freedom and pro or con economic freedom. Consistently held, these positions generate 4 political types: libertarian (pro/pro), liberal (pro/con), conservative (con/pro), authoritarian (con/con). But some have suggested adding pro or con foreign intervention.

Again we see an 8-type model lurking, though many seem to have trouble admitting even 4 political types into discussion - whether from lack of mental capacity or from an agenda of excluding a more attractive competitor (usually libertarianism). And the 8-type framework could certainly be expanded to 16, 32, etc., if other strongly distinguishing categories could be found that account for even more of the differences between people's political views.

Just to leave no implicit stones unthrown: I do think there is merit in the MBTI and in the 5-Factor model, as in these other models, as long as people remain empirical and don't confuse the map with the territory. There is a lot of subtlety in human personality.

In fact, the MBTI also have tinkered with an "expanded analysis" that looks at what they call "sub-factors" within each of the factors. There are 5 components, for instance, of intuiting vs. sensing - one being abstract vs. concrete, another being imaginative vs. realistic, another being intellectual vs. pragmatic, another being theoretical vs. experiential, and another being original vs. traditional.

As the questionnaires reveal, people typically have widely varying scores on each of these subscales, resulting in a very nuanced overall score for intuiting vs. sensing (N vs. S). You can even have a strong sensing subscale that vividly colors four other strong sensing subscales. For instance, you may come out strongly thinking (T) on four subscales, but come out tender rather than tough on the fifth. This makes a much different personality than one who is strong T across the board.

So, back to the 7 billion in 16 pigeonholes problem: since there are 5 subfactors for each of the original 4 factors in the MBTI and another 7 subfactors for the new fifth factor (Comfort-Discomfort), multiplying the options yields (2 x 2 x 2 x 2 x 2) x (2 x 2 x 2 x 2 x 2) x (2 x 2 x 2 x 2 x 2) x (2 x 2 x 2 x 2 x 2) x (2 x 2 x 2 x 2 x 2 x 2 x 2) = 32 x 32 x 32 x 32 x 128 = 33,554,432 possible personality types. Divide that into 7 billion, and you see that you, precious snowflake, are "just like" 208 other people on earth.

Your mileage may vary. The subfactors aren't equally subdivided or distributed, so you win some and lose some on that 208 clones-of-me bit. Kinda like guessing how many inhabited planets there are in the universe. But wouldn't it be cool to find even two or three people "just like you"? 

REB

Bravo!!!!!

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5 hours ago, RobinReborn said:

I've read a decent amount critical of Myers Briggs.

 

It's not to say that it's completely useless, but it's not clear to me that it makes useful predictions or is stable across a person's lifetime.

MB typology is like  horoscopes in some  respects. 

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2 minutes ago, BaalChatzaf said:
5 hours ago, RobinReborn said:

I've read a decent amount critical of Myers Briggs.

 

It's not to say that it's completely useless, but it's not clear to me that it makes useful predictions or is stable across a person's lifetime.

MB typology is like  horoscopes in some  respects. 

They can be used for good or evil. They are fun. Some people like to associate them with mythology.They come in multiples of 2. Many people read what they want to into them and manipulate them to say what they want them to say. Some people make a living off of huckstering them.

Those are some similarities between the MBTI and astrology/horoscopes. The dissimilarities are really more interesting, unless you're into pathology. :cool:

REB

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